US will never default on its obligations -Geithner

WASHINGTON Wed May 25, 2011 2:46pm BST

WASHINGTON May 25 (Reuters) - U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on Wednesday dismissed the possibility of a U.S. government default, despite a tough stance taken by some Republicans in budget negotiations.

"Let me just say it clearly: This country will never default on its obligations," Geithner said in a live interview with Politico. "It would be a catastrophic failure of basic governance to do that," he said.

"Congress will do what it has always done, which is to pass the debt limit. So, our plan is for Congress to pass the debt limit. Our fallback plan is for Congress to pass the debt limit, and our fallback to the fallback plan is for Congress to pass the debt limit."

Asked if that comment really meant the U.S. government had no contingency plan, Geithner repeated his confidence that Congress would not allow a default. (Reporting by Doug Palmer; Editing by James Dalgleish)

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